26/06/2017 by etiennefish
There’s just something about sitting in the night-time muggy not-quite-heat, a full 24 hours after a heavy, rainy season rain, when everything just GROWS, and approximately all the critters come out to play in the lights, before the generator goes to sleep. Its the dodging of hard-shelled, dive-bombing beetles, and the trying to avoid stepping on balls of millipedes in flip-flops. The large, recurrent and arrhythmic SMACK on the outside of your tent of most every form of insect, falling fruit, and mostly feral cat (chasing said insect and fruit), and my frenzied, accompanying double, triple, and quadruple checking of the tent zips to make sure that at least the larger creatures are still on the other side of the canvas. There’s something about listening to the giant, raucously shouting birds of prey nesting in the trees above, protest an intruder into their airspace (who needs a guard dog when you got 50 birds, who will together take up a joint call, even if it is only someone going to the latrine?) at both midnight, and 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5am. Oh and the sounds of the others snug in their tents around you, snoring, receiving texts, playing games (oh candy crush, that music…), and the soundtrack of an overly dramatic action adventure running at speaker-crackling volume, alongside the normal sounds of crickets and/or katydids and the odd suicidal mosquito happily whining along, against all odds, INSIDE your mosquito net. Its that kind of night that sometimes I’m wishing for a pillow that was a little less lumpy and a mattress that doesn’t leave me waking up feeling like I’ve spontaneously aged 60 years overnight. But mostly, I find I’m strangely quite content and in just the right place.